The Reproof Blog

on the craft of writing and rewriting.

Email is the most accessible API

Somehow email brought us web 2.0's promise of interoperability and made it work for everyone.

You’d hardly expect to launch a new note-taking device in 2022 without syncing, collaboration, text recognition, integrations, or even an API in the hopes the ecosystem will build itself. Yet Amazon did, with their Kindle Scribe.

On OKRs and the art of setting unobtainable goals

In the pursuit of the impossible.

Goals we understand, almost intuitively, from childhood. We’re imitators, repeating what we see others do until we, too, can do it. One foot in front of the other, falling until we figure out how to walk then run. Babbling unintel

How to stop Google Calendar email notifications

You need to know when meetings are coming up. But one notification’s enough.

It started with one email. Then two. And before I knew it, somehow, some combination of Apple Calendar and Google Calendar had decided to email me over and over—sometimes as many as 9 times—each time I had an event. It wasn’t the

The Canon Cat and the Mac that Steve Jobs killed

A software design framework for humans, distilled from Jef Raskin's Humane Interface.

Imagine an original Macintosh, a beige box with an oversized chin and offset floppy drive. A friendly little machine. You sit down to draft a letter, tap the keyboard to rouse the Mac from its slumber, and discover the Mac is runn

The Friday Update: On journaling to get things done

Tell them what you did. And what you're going to do. And how you're going to do it. Weekly.

Where'd the time go? It's not that you were sitting around doing nothing. You were busy, with emails and meetings, going through the motions of work. But was it all for naught? Did you actually accomplish anything? Or was it just

Don’t watch your word count.

Longform is good. So is shortform.

Word count matters. The more you say, the more they’ll listen. One can’t simply share a recipe or tip. You first must tell your life story; only then can you relate a tip or three. Or so goes the standard online advice, arguing wh

We need a do-not-disturb mode, for collaboration.

The best collaboration comes in spurts.

You’re finally focused, typing, pouring everything in your mind onto digital paper, writing the thing you’ve put off ‘til the last minute. You’re in the flow, or something approximating it. A few more hours of this, and the fear o

Microsoft and the art of distributing something new.

Full-time employment is leveraging your employer's distribution. So is writing for a publication, recording under a label, releasing software in a bundle, or making the first app for a brand-new platform.

The first time Microsoft sold a spreadsheet, it didn’t even sell it itself. The spreadsheet standard had been set by VisiCalc, that first killer app for PCs. Microsoft had to follow, fast. Which is what it did best. If VisiCalc an

The metaverse is already here, on Spotify.

A persistent, consistent experience would change digital work. The rest can wait.

It's the tiny things you miss the most, the things you take for granted until they're gone and you're surprised by how handy they were. As it was when I started a new Apple Music trial, lured in by the human curators and 6 months

Log In is more popular than Sign In: The UX Microcopy Survey

How 100 SaaS tools tell users to join, check pricing, get help, see legal stuff, exit, and more.

Is it Log in, or Sign in? Contact Us, or just Contact? Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, or is Legal alone enough? Pricing, right? Not Price? Sentence or title case? Or all caps? Much like the wording on exit signs and in-fligh

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